By K Veeriah
AS a student, in an era where teachers were entrusted to helm the prestigious post of a headmaster based on his or her qualities, both as an educator and holistic proponent of moulding the character of their students in studies and sports, it is sad that such essential qualities have been conscripted to oblivion by a blinkered race-based perspective.
In my view, a headmaster who subscribes to the notion that sports be confined to a race-based polemic, is either a racist or an inept leader. In either circumstance, is not fit to helm an educational institution.
On another matter, the Almighty created our mothers and sisters in a biological footprint which includes the menstrual cycle. However, some mortals want to play God where teachers as in the case, take it upon themselves to intrude into God’s creation by conducting “period checks” on young girls.
It is not only repulsive but may well tantamount to a criminal offence; an act of invasion of the student’s privacy.
And let’s talk about rape. Make no mistake about it. Sexual assault is a heinous, despicable and abhorrent crime that must be condemned in no uncertain terms.
Naturally, society would have expected a teacher to take cognisance of the said issues. Sadly, we are saddled with members of the teaching fraternity who have no inhibition in spinning a joke on such a repugnant issue.
In my view, they can be best described as “perverts” and, as such, do not deserve to remain in the teaching profession!
In the space of a few days, more students have come forward to disclose the abuses they have encountered from their teachers from the past or present time, including the religious ones! Such disclosures may well be the tip of the iceberg!
Teachers must be professionals
It is, thus, obvious that the authorities have a fiduciary duty to initiate a commission of inquiry to investigate the prevalence of such abuses.
The idiom, that, “what you reap is what you sow” seems apt when it comes to the quality of the teaching profession. In my view, the core issue seems to rest with the curriculum that has been devised, and indoctrinated, in the teachers’ training modules.
I would argue that an objective teaching programme ought to be premised upon disseminating knowledge regardless of political, race or religious inclination.
Education must stand free from political consideration for the simple reason that it remains as the only conduit in moulding character, living skills and compatibility of our youths in not only facing an ever-challenging labour market, but also in their obligation towards transforming the prevailing socio-economic and political status quo of the nation.
The rhetoric, “our youths are our future leaders“, should not remain as a convenient political mouth-piece. It must be translated into proactive actions by our self-serving political chauvinists.
Until and unless our politicians conscientiously re-calibrate the current education system, our youth will continue to be encapsulated by a narrow educational perspective that would serve as an antecedent to the development of a progressive mindset amongst our youth.
The teaching profession ought to be innovative in rebranding itself, never mind what our incompetent political bigots have to say.
As an alumnus of the Bukit Mertajam High School (BMHS), I have always taken pride in our clarion call of “Accomplish or Do Not Begin“. And, as the facts will stand, a cross-section of ex-BMHS students have left their imprint in serving our country, thanks to our dedicated headmasters and teachers. So is the reality in many esteem schools all over the nation.
To all such headmasters and teachers, past or present, who have steadfastly served their calling without been blinded by race, religion and political intrusion, I offer my salutations. – May 8, 2021
K Veeriah is a veteran unionist and a contributor to FocusM.
The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.